Education experts are calling on the government to review its bedroom tax after early research indicated it was having an adverse impact on learning because affected children were stressed and hungry at school.Which is unfortunate, but 100% the responsibility of their parents.
Researchers from Manchester University found that children were showing signs of emotional distress because they were seeing their parents under pressure and were experiencing material hardship as a result of the benefit cut. Parents were having to cut back on food, shopping for fewer and cheaper provisions, and hungry children were finding it harder to concentrate in lessons, sometimes leading to classroom unrest and aggressive behaviour, the report said.Aha! Yet another excuse to be trotted out when ‘It ain’t ‘is fault, ‘e ‘as that ADHD!’ stops working…
The study, by researchers at Manchester Institute of Education, found that forcing children to share bedrooms – under the policy, two children of the same sex under 16 are expected to share, as are two children under 10 regardless of sex – was also having a negative impact on learning, with no quiet place for homework and teenagers’ sleep disturbed by younger siblings.So a hard-working parent struggling to afford rent must see a benefit monkey get a larger house so their kids can have separate bedrooms? I should cocoa!
Erica Burman, also professor of education at Manchester, added: “The government should review its policy. Doing so would show a greater commitment to supporting children, helping parents to maintain their responsibilities, reinforcing communities, tackling educational inequalities and ensuring that the effects of austerity do not fall disproportionately on poor families.”Everything will fall ‘disproportionately’ on poor families – it’s an incentive not to be poor in the first place!
In addition, the Manchester research claimed that the policy was not persuading families to downsize. As well as a lack of suitable smaller properties in the social housing sector, parents said they were prepared to lose money and suffer the hardship in order to stay in their home and keep local family ties and friendships.So, it’s their choice. They are the ones condemning their offspring to these disadvantages. Not my problem. Certainly not worth a single penny more of my taxes.
Schools and community groups have responded to increased need by reallocating resources to ensure that children are fed and clothed. Schools have used pupil premium funding, available to children from deprived backgrounds who are on free school meals, to extend breakfast clubs.Clearly the schools have too much fat in the budget. Time to cut it again, Education Secretary!